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Welcome to the CWGC Archive

The aim of the CWGC archive is to collect, manage and preserve materials which document the history of the organisation, the individuals we commemorate, the cemeteries and memorials we maintain, and to make such records accessible to the public.

About our archive

The CWGC Archive is located at the Commission’s Head Office in Maidenhead, Berkshire, and contains over 10,000 items from the Commission’s past including personal correspondence, maintenance and tour reports, staff records, photographs, and press cuttings. The Commission’s archive collection was made digital for the first time in 2017.

The archive service is run by the CWGC Archives Team which is responsible for the preservation and provision of access to the archive collection.

Designated status

In March 2021, the high standard of the CWGC archive service was recognised by The National Archives (TNA) and we were delighted to be awarded Accredited Archive Service status by The National Archives administered Archive Service Accreditation scheme. This award demonstrates the CWGC archive service has met clearly defined national standards for the care and provision of access to their archived collections.

Visiting our archive

Our Reading Room is open 4 days a week (Monday - Thursday, 10:00 am to 4.30 pm).
You can request an appointment by contacting us via: visitarchives@cwgc.org. Please note that your booking is not confirmed until you have received an email from a member of the CWGC archive team.

Whilst we will endeavour to stick to any bookings, there may be times when we have to cancel booked visits at short notice in order to comply with regulations. We will do our utmost to inform you in advance should this be the case, but it is also strongly advised that you contact the archive team on the day of your visit to confirm that the archive is open.

As we are not yet operating at full capacity, we will be limiting file orders to no more than 10 items from the archive collection per person per visit, and these items will need to be ordered in advance.

Please note that while we are able to answer some enquiries relating to the archives ourselves, we are unable to undertake extensive research on your behalf.

Start your research through our dedicated online archive portal
Start your research through our dedicated online archive portal

The CWGC archive tracks the history of the Commission from its founding in 1917 to the present day.

Explore the CWGC Archive

CWGC Archives: I would like to...

Start your research through our dedicated online portal where you can browse our archive collection and access digitised records:
https://archive.cwgc.org

 

If you can’t find what you are looking for, please contact our Enquiries Team at:
enquiries@cwgc.org

Our archive is open 4 days a week (Monday – Thursday, 10:00 am to 4.30 pm). Request an appointment to visit our Reading Room by contacting us via visitarchives@cwgc.org.

 

Please note that your booking is not confirmed until you have received an email from a member of the CWGC archive team.

To start your research, check our online catalogue to see if any records relate to your enquiry:
https://archive.cwgc.org

 

Need help getting started? Our bitesize guide provides tips for researching former Commission employees, what records we hold relating to staff, and how to use a staff card to find out more about their role here:
cwgc-archive-research-guides-staff-member.pdf

 

If you are not able to find what you are looking for, please contact enquiries@cwgc.org

To start your research, check our online catalogue to see if any records relate to your enquiry:
https://archive.cwgc.org

Need help getting started? Our bitesize guide provides a few tips on how to begin your research into one of our sites. You'll find out how to locate and access records relating to the site covering aspects including design, construction, unveiling, and maintenance.
cwgc-archive-research-guides-cemeteries-or-memorials.pdf

If you are not able to find what you are looking for, please contact enquiries@cwgc.org

Use our Find War Dead search tool to discover the records of 1.7 million men and women commemorated by CWGC:
Find war dead | War graves search | CWGC

Need help getting started? Explore out bitesize guides, designed to help you research an individual who died in the First World War.

If you are not able to find what you are looking for, please contact enquiries@cwgc.org

Our collection of First World War e-files (or enquiry files) are a window into how people felt at the time and the efforts of the Commission to help them.

Find out more about e-files here:
https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/cwgc-archive/efiles/ 

Read more about our work and how the Commission started here:

https://www.cwgc.org/who-we-are/our-story/

Read more about our volunteering opportunities here:
Volunteer for Us | Maintaining War Graves | CWGC